Next, the salt cellar was placed on the table. The cellar, or container, for the salt was decorative, and the main adornment for most tables. It occupied a place of honor, and as such, the placement of the salt also determined where guests sat, with the host and his or her most honored guests on one side and guests of lesser importance on the other. Therefore, no one sat down until the salt cellar, also simply called "the salt," was placed.
All guests would be led into the dining hall, in order of their importance. The lord, or host, would sit at the head of the table, with the most honored guests on the right and the least honored on the left. Guests would always wash their hands prior to beginning the meal, and grace was said before the food was served.